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May Day Protest in Seattle, 2002 Welcome to the Center for the Study of Work, Labor, and Democracy

The Center for the Study of Work, Labor, and Democracy is an interdisciplinary research and education initiative at the University of California, Santa Barbara that aims to expand public understanding and discussion of important issues facing working people. In cooperation with the Department of History, the Center administers an undergraduate minor in Labor Studies and a graduate-level Colloquium in Work, Labor and Political Economy. The Center also hosts conferences and workshops that contribute to an understanding, of the issues and ideas, past and present, illuminating the character of American capitalism and the working class that sustains it. The Center is part of the All-UC Miguel Contreras Labor Program.

 

Recent News

Caitlin Rathe on Food Stamps

Christopher Phelps on Rick Perlstein

Nelson Lichtenstein on the South

Kurt Newman on the Left

Nelson Lichtenstein on VW and Northwestern

Jean-Christian Vinel on Professors as Workers

Samir Sonti on Student Workers

Elizabeth Shermer on Faculty Unions

Kit Smemo on Liberal Republicans

Kurt Newman on US Intellectual History Blog

Nelson Lichtenstein on The AFL-CIO's new agenda.

Kurt Newman on UAW 2865's sympathy strike with AFSCME 3299.

Nelson Lichtenstein on Resistance to Obamacare.

Nelson Lichtenstein on Unions and Liberalism.

Samir Sonti on Rosa Parks' overlooked past as an activist and organizer.

Nelson Lichtenstein on Obamacare.

Nelson Lichtenstein on Michigan's Right-to-Work law.

Nelson Lichtenstein awarded 2012 Sol Stetin Award for Labor History.

  • Read his acceptance speech here.

Eileen Boris in an op-ed for the Sacramento Bee

Eileen Boris & Jennifer Klien in a New York Times op-ed

 

Past Events

Sasha AbraskyApril 3 / Thursday / 4:00PM / McCune Conference Room, 6020 HSSB: Sasha Abramsky, author of The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives (2013) and contributor to The Nation, The Atlantic Monthly, and Rolling Stone. Sponsored by the Great Society at 50 Initiative and the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center.

Dean BakerApril 8 / Tuesday / 7:30 PM / Student Resource Building, Multipurpose Room: Dean Baker, “The Importance of Full employment and the Routes for Getting There.” Baker is co-founder of the Center for Economic and Policy Research and author of The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive (2011). Sponsored by the Great Society at 50 Initiative.

Background readings can be found here.

Paul StarrApril 18 / Friday / 1:00PM / Student Resource Building, Multipurpose Room: Paul Starr,  Princeton, “America’s Peculiar Struggle Over Health Care, Then and Now.”  Starr is author of the Pulitzer Prize winning, The Social Transformation of American Medicine (1982) and a founder of The American Prospect. He served as an advisor to President Bill Clinton on healthcare policy. His talk will be followed by a symposium on implementation of the Affordable Care Act in California, featuring reports from policymakers and activists on the front lines of this effort. Sponsored by the Great Society at 50 Initiative.

Larry CohenApril 25 / Friday / 8:00 AM / Student Resources Building, Multipurpose Room: “The American Labor Movement: Crisis and Creativity,” a two-day conference. Keynote speakers are Larry Cohen, President of the Communication Workers of America, and Will Jones, University of Wisconsin, author of The March on Washington: Jobs, Freedom, and the Forgotten History of Civil Rights (2013).  Co-sponsored by the National Union of Health Care Workers and Jacobin magazine.

Click here, for a conference program; click here for the conference website.

Eileen BorisApril 30 / Wednesday / 4:00PM / Student Resources Building, Multipurpose Room: Eileen Boris, UCSB, “Fifty Years Later: Women’s Rights, Title VII and the Struggle for Workplace Justice.” With Jennifer Klein, Boris is the author of Caring for America: Home Health Care Workers in the Shadow of the Welfare State (2012).  This is the Phi Beta Kappa Wilson Memorial Lecture.

Karen FergusonMay 1 / Thursday / 4:00PM / McCune Conference Room, HSSB 6020: Karen Ferguson, Simon Fraser University, speaks on her new book Top Down: The Ford Foundation, Black Power, and the Reinvention of Racial Liberalism (2013). Join Professor Ferguson on May 2nd at 1:00PM in McCune for a Symposium Looking Beyond the Global Great Society,” with Amy Offner, University of Pennsylvania; and Alyosha Goldstein, University of New Mexico. Sponsored by the Great Society at 50 Initiative and the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center. Her paper can be found here.

Syposium on the New History of CapitalismMay 16 / Friday / 1:00 PM / HSSB 4041. Symposium on the New History of Capitalism: the Nineteenth Century Crucible. Participants include Stephen Mihm, University of Georgia, author of A Nation of Counterfeiters: Capitalists, Con Men, and the Making of the United States (2009);  Naomi Lamoreaux, Yale, author of Insider Lending: Banks, Personal Connections, and Economic Development in Industrial New England (1996); and John Majewski, UCSB, author of Modernizing a Slave Economy: The Economic Vision of the Confederate Nation (2009).

The papers offered by the symposium speakers: J.Majewski (here), N. Lamoreaux (here), S. Mihm (here).





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The Colloquium in Work, Labor and Political Economy will take place at 1:00pm on designated Fridays during the Spring Quarter in HSSB 4041.

 

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Center for the Study of Work, Labor, and Democracy
Department of History,
University of California, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9410.
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